House Genealogy: City Directories

On Sunday, I went to the library to look at city directories. The library does not have a complete set of directories, but I gleaned some interesting tidbits anyway, and supplemented them with a little census work.

1920-21 City Directory:  our street existed (and was not named Oak, contrary to the plat record we saw at closing). No reverse address listings in the directory, and I didn’t go through all the listings to see if anyone lived at our address.  I have not been able to find a 1920 census for our street.

1927-28: Charles D. Bates lived here. He was a contractor with three children under 18 and no wife. (He wasn’t listed at all in the 1920-21 directory.)

1929-30: Lucy Leigh Brown and her sister Katherine lived there. Lucy was a music teacher and owned the house (or else her sister did). Per the city directories, the Browns lived there through at least 1939. (Gap in city directories from 1939-1947.) (In 1935, the house to the south was occupied by Kappa Kappa Gamma.  The local chapter was founded in 1925.)

1930 census: Catherine (b abt 1893, and with no occupation) owned the house (worth $6500), and her sister Lucy Lee (b abt 1898, a violin teacher) lived with her.  Both were born in Missouri.  Also in the house were: (1) Morris (age 23) and Anna (age 20) Rosenberg, renters from New York ($35/month) with no occupation (although Morris had attended school within the year – perhaps he was a university student), and (2) Francis and Margaret McClure, renters from Virginia ($20/month), both age 60, and age 57 at the time of their first marriage. The Rosenbergs were newlyweds, while Francis did something blurry with grain, except that he was unemployed. Perhaps the upstairs was already divided into apartments in 1930? (No one in the house had a radio.)

1947: Wm. H. January and Aug. C. Fuquay* lived there. Neither was identified as owner. Mr. January worked for the Ozark Floor Co.** (Lucy and Katherine had moved to 336 St. Charles.)

1951: Our house was now known as the January Apartments, a five flat with the Januarys occupying Apartment 1. Others: 2, Herman A. Tuck, Jr.; 3, Paul H. Bollinger; 4, Reed E. Tyson; and 5, Eug. O. Griffith.

1955: 1, Wm H January; 2, Donald B Mosley; 3, Bradley W Kidder; 4, Tyson E Reed [sic]; 5, vacant.

1957: 1, Wm H January; 2, Donald B Mosley; 3, Clara A Ridder; 4, Chas E Scharlan, Jr; 5, Wm B Fisher.

1959: 1, Wm H January; 2, Donald B Mosley; 3, Mrs Clara A Ridder; 4, Chas E Scharlan, Jr; 5, Richd M Akers.

1961: 1, R Keith Bolar; 2, Donald B Mosley; 3, Knox M Broom; 4, vacant; 5, vacant. (At the same time, my dad lived at 335 N Gregg Av.)

1962: 1, Dick Vromana; 2, Donald B Mosley; 3, Knox M Broom; 4, Tom Tunnell; 5, Bryant McCarley.

1964: 1, Wm L Owens; 2, Donald B Moseley; 3, Randall A Tomlinson; 4, Travis B Tunnell, Jr.; 5, S Lee Bowman.

1965: 1, Billy E Lowrey; 2, vacant; 3, Geo L McConnell Jr.; 4, Travis B Tunnell, Jr.; 5, vacant.

1966 and 1968: Lucy L Brown, music teacher, resides at 112 S University. (Katherine is gone. Lucy is not in the 1969 directory. Perhaps she died. I found a Lucy Brown, b 29 Apr 1889 and d Feb 1969, in Fayetteville AR in the Social Security Death Index.)

1966: Wm. H and Mable C January, and Thomas W., all working for the Ozark Floor Co., reside at 432 N Washington. (James C and Bobbie J January of Ozark Floor Co., reside at W Ash St.)

Remaining issues: Is the street name spelled with one R or two? Are there more city directories at the University? Or somewhere? Need to do title work. Need to talk to Mr. January’s son Tom.

*An Augustus Coyle Fuquay (or Gus) was born July 31, 1895 in Cero Gardo, Arkansas, and married Grace James 15 Feb. 1939 in Washington County, AR (where Fayetteville is). He registered for the WWI draft in Broken Bow, OK in 1917 (where he had a wife, who was probably not Grace), registered for the WWII draft in 1942 in Fayetteville (living at 319 W Maple then), and died in Broken Bow, OK in 1979.

**Ozark Floor Co. is still in business (although only since 1948 per their website) and still associated with the Januarys. Tom founded his own flooring business, Tom January Floors. Mabel (8 Oct 1903-Aug 1975) and William H (25 Jan 1903-11 Feb 1993) January obtained their social security cards in Illinois.

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7 Responses to “House Genealogy: City Directories”

  1. Jennifer says:

    How cool! I need to go down to our library and look at what they have… it’s only a block away, so I have no excuse.

  2. Lisa says:

    I just realized that I have a photocopy of an advertisement for Ozark Floor Co. from a 1986 city directory, which asserts that the Januarys have served Northwest Arkansas since 1945 (not 1948).

  3. Jenni says:

    We did this too. it is so neat to find out who lived at your house….

  4. GrandHolly says:

    What IS your street name?

  5. Lisa says:

    Hi there, Mother Holly,
    I’ll email you — I’m trying not to make a great big sign to where I live to all the internet. Won’t be that hard to find me, but I don’t want it to be easy. :)
    Love, LisaCarol

  6. [...] after its conversion to a five-flat (Apartment 2 of “the January Apartments”) per the 1951 Fayetteville City Directory. (He would have been about [...]

  7. [...] Katherine lived with a Presbyterian minister Charles D. Bates and his family in our house in the 1920s, and owned it (while two couples rented from them) per the 1930 census, as I have explained [...]

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